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Ma Yansong and MAD Architects were invited by LIFE Magazine to design “Wonderland,” a flexible reading space located at PAGE ONE Beijing Sanlitun bookstore. The completed design was unveiled on April 23rd, in honor of World Book Day 2015. 

For city dwellers, reading is a way to construct one’s own inner sanctum, their “wonderland.” Once you put on headphones to block out city noise, you can feel the calm of the sun’s rays, green tress and clear blue skies in your own personal sanctuary.

The design of the reading space takes the shape of a rabbit immersed in its own world. Wearing headphones and facing the store’s front window, the rabbit is like the visiting readers—lost in their thoughts imagining far-off worlds. It is a comfortable space for visitors to sit or lie down, feeling their “two long rabbit ears” growing, as they listen to the sounds of their individual “Wonderland.”

Speaking on the design, Ma Yansong said, “architecture exists to protect human emotions, architectural space needs to escape from doctrine and return to its original intent of individual emotion. ‘Innocence’ is not necessarily to be contradictory to the ‘reality’ of metropolitan life, as I can see people having their own universe deep within themselves. Through literature they can enter different worlds and have conversations with their own fantasies.”

Type : Exhibition Space, Art Installation
Size : 6m (L) * 3m (W) * 2.8m (H)
Proportion of reading space : 6.5sqm
Directors in Charge : Ma Yansong, Dang Qun, Yosuke Hayano
Design Team : Yin Ming, Sear Ng